A total of 10 million pounds of flour has been recalled by Minneapolis-based flour milling company – General Mills Inc. This was done in response to an E.Coli outbreak in 20 states of the United States Of America.
Three of its flour brands were affected and effectively recalled as the outbreak has led to about 38 people falling ill.
No statement has been officially issued by either the state or federal government even though they have been investigating the outbreak.
There has been about 38 incidents of E.Coli across 20 states and federal authorities have been investigating these cases. General Mills however in a news release issued stated that the E.Coli O121 was identified in its flour between Dec. 21, 2015 and May 3, 2016.
It was reported by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that at least half of the reported cases of people with E.Coli had fallen ill after they had used flour produced by General Mills.
Those products recalled include one SKU of Gold Medal Wondra branded flour, two SKU’s of Signature Kitchens branded flour and six SKUs (stock keeping units or UPC codes) of Gold Medal branded flour.
A list of retailers who had received shipments of those flour brands that had been recalled include;
General Mills Inc. News release also stated that at present the E.Coli O121 had not been discovered in their manufacturing facility nor in their products. The company also stated that it had not been contacted directly by any of its consumers with claims of illness from the consumption of their flour products.
The statement also indicated that because of the company’s rich history of 150 years as a leading flour provider it had acted quickly in its recall of its products to avoid any further harm to its consumers. This was stated in the communique released by the President of the company’s Baking division, Liz Nordlie.
She further stated that it was most likely that some of the victims could have eaten batter or raw dough and the company had gone ahead to make blog posts informing people especially children not to consume batter or raw dough because of their risk of exposure to harmful pathogens.
Flour according to her comes from milling wheat which is grown at times outdoors and this has its risk of bacteria contamination but these bacteria are destroyed by frying, boiling or baking.
She also urged consumers to observe good hygiene like washing their hands, cleaning work surfaces and washing their kitchen utensils thoroughly after contact with flour or raw dough.
The labelling information of flour recalled were also issued and they are as follows;
– 2-pound Gold Medal All Purpose Flour — Package UPC 000-16000-10710; Better if Used by Dates 25MAY2017KC thru 03JUN2017K
– 5-pound Gold Medal All Purpose Flour — Package UPC 000-16000-10610; Better if Used by Dates 25MAY2017KC, 27MAY2017KC thru 31MAY2017KC, 01JUN2017KC, 03JUN2017KC thru 05JUN2017KC, 11JUN2017KC thru 14JUN2017KC
– 13.5-ounce Gold Medal Wondra — Package UPC 000-16000-18980; Better if Used by Dates 25FEB2017 thru 30MAR2017
– 2-pound Gold Medal Self-Rising Flour — Package UPC 000-16000-11710; Better if Used by Dates 23AUG2016KC
– 5-pound Signature Kitchens Unbleached Flour All Purpose Enriched —Package UPC 000-21130-53022; Better if Used by Dates BB MAY 27 2017
– 5-pound Gold Medal Unbleached Flour — Package UPC 000-16000-19610; Better if Used by Dates 25MAY2017KC, 27MAY2017KC, 03JUN2017KC, 04JUN2017KC
– 5-pound Signature Kitchens All Purpose Flour Enriched Bleached — Package UPC 000-21130-53001; Better if Used by Dates BB MAY 28 2017
– 10-pound Gold Medal All Purpose Flour — Package UPC 000-16000-10410; Better if Used by Dates 02JUN2017KC,03JUN2017KC
– 10-pound Gold Medal All Purpose Flour Banded Pack — Package UPC 000-16000-10410; Better if Used by Dates 03JUN2017KC, 04JUN2017KC, 05JUN2017KC
You can reach General Mills on their consumer hot-line: 800-230-8103 or check out their web page for more information.
The E.Coli O121 strain is a bacterium that is known to cause dehydration and bloody diarrhea in victims.
Children, Pregnant women, the elderly and people with compromised immune systems are at a higher risk.
It is recommended that consumers visit the nearest medical centre if they have any concerns about the illness and if they are worried that they may have the E.Coli O121 strain they should immediately contact local or state public health authorities.
Source: Food Safety News